How Do I Sell My Stock?

by Robert Lee, studioD

Selling your stock is as easy as opening a brokerage account with a financial institution. The broker assigned to your account can process an order to sell your stock when you make the request. Stockbrokers invest in the stock market for individuals and companies. They also help clients sell previously purchased stock. Opening an account is as simple as opening a checking account.


Some people hold stock certificates, which are paper documents that indicate ownership of stock in a company. Sell stock certificates by opening a brokerage account and depositing the certificates. After that you can place an order to sell the stock, with instructions for a check to be mailed to you for the proceeds.


Stocks are a financial security representing ownership in a company. There are many types of stocks, including blue chip stocks, growth stocks and international stocks. Blue chip stocks represent investments in companies that are highly stable and profitable year after year. Growth stocks offer an opportunity for significant profits -- if the company achieves great growth and the value of the stock increases. International stocks are investments in foreign companies.


Most banks and credit unions offer brokerage services, and that is a good place to start if you never have had a brokerage account. A customer service representative can tell you exactly how the process works. Opening a brokerage account with your bank or credit union may be more appealing to you because of your existing relationship.


It’s up to you to decide when to sell your stock. Some people sell stock because they need the money for a certain purpose, such as a down payment on a house or to pay a tax bill. Others may feel the value of the stock has reached its peak. Track the price of the stock to determine when to sell. Check your brokerage company’s website for up-to-date stock prices, which can change daily or even hourly.


Your broker will charge a fee for selling the stock. The lowest fees are usually offered by discount brokers. Discount brokers advertise heavily online and on television, and some have local offices. A discount broker may charge as little as $7 to complete a transaction, according to “The Dallas Morning News.”


Another option is selling the stock directly through the company or its transfer agent. Transfer agents maintain a list of people and entities that own a company's stock. To sell your stock this way call a contact number listed on your stock certificates and explain that you want to sell.

About the Author

Robert Lee has been an entrepreneur and writer with a background in starting small businesses since 1974. He has written for various websites and for several daily and community newspapers on a wide variety of topics, including business, the Internet economy and more. He studied English in college and earned a Bachelor of Arts in liberal arts from Governor's State University.

Photo Credits

  • Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images